Telecom Egypt Q1 net up 3pc, beats forecasts
Cairo, May 13, 2010
Landline monopoly Telecom Egypt said on Thursday its first-quarter net profit rose 3 percent, far exceeding analysts forecasts after it reined in costs and earned more from renting its infrastructure.
The company posted net profit of 992 million Egyptian pounds ($177 million) as revenue eased to 2.50 billion pounds from 2.53 billion a year earlier. Earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose to 1.44 billion pounds from 1.32 billion.
Eight analysts polled by Reuters had seen profit at 668 million pounds on revenue of 2.32 billion.
Telecom Egypt said it had 9.3 million fixed-line subscribers at end-March, compared with 11.5 million a year earlier. It tightened its credit policy last year, cutting off around 2 million subscribers.
"Lower subscriber numbers have had no demonstrable impact on our top line," chief executive Tarek Tantawy said in the earnings statement.
Wholesale revenues, or the money the company makes from services such as leasing bandwidth and providing interconnection to other firms, rose 14 percent on the same quarter a year ago thanks to more activity among third party operators, the statement added.
"Our diversified business model has continued to deliver stability in our revenue base, with advances in wholesale revenues offsetting any short-term pressure in retail revenues as a result of our promotional activities."
The firm, in which the Egyptian government retains an 80 percent stake, said income from investments including its 45 percent stake in Vodafone's Egyptian unit was 300 million pounds. - Reuters